I work for a research company.
One of my jobs is to program surveys.
If the survey is straight forward, it doesn’t require too much thinking on my end.
But, sometimes it gets complicated.
If respondent answers “Yes” to Q2, then he should skip to Q4.
If respondent answers “Yes” to Q2 and “No” to Q4, then he shouldn’t see Page 5.
If respondent answers to being a “teacher”, he should not see Q25.
But, if respondent answers to bring a “teacher” AND he answers that he works “in a day school”, then he should see Q25.
To me, they are fun!
Until they don’t work.
At which point it can turn into one big headache.
Yesterday, I was programming one of those challenging surveys for a conference that was currently taking place and ending on Thursday evening.
I felt under pressure to get my work done and have the survey ready to be sent out.
But, “Q16” wasn’t working.
It was supposed to appear only if in “Q15” the respondent answered anything but “not at all”.
But, it wasn’t working.
I checked my logic 1,000 times.
I had it right.
What was going on?
I wrote an email to Support and within minutes they phoned me back.
Thank G-d for Support.
The man who called sounded genuinely happy to help me resolve the issue.
“Let me just take a look. Give me a minute.”
“Sure,” I responded gratefully.
After a minute, he told me to check his work, but it still wasn’t working.
“Nope. Still not working,” I said.
“Oh. Give me another minute.”
So, I hung on, though I started to feel worried.
I hung on for something like three more minutes.
“Ok. Now try it.”
Still not working.
What is going on here?
Does he not know what he’s doing?
“Let me call you back, ok?”
Call me back.
As for assistance on your end, please and get back to me when it’s fixed, will ye?, I said to myself.
I tried to remain patient, but felt myself getting more upset.
He called back five minutes later.
I checked his work.
Not only was Q16 not working, he screwed up the rest of the logic on that page!
Q14, Q15, Q16 and Q17 were not working as programmed!
“WHAT. DID. YOU. DO?????? You. messed. up. all. my. work!!!!!!!!” I said in a not so nice manner.
Oh boy, was I stuck.
It’s now or never to process through it.
- I should be grateful that there is even such a thing called SUPPORT and that someone was available to help the moment I needed it.
- This guy is on my side. He’s doing his best to help me, not hurt me.
- He probably has more experience than I’m giving him credit for.
- That within five minutes tops, he’ll probably figure it out.
I knew he would. 😉
I thanked him for his patience.
He thanked me for mine.
I got stuck on frustration, but it’s not the first time.
It’ll happen again.
I’m just grateful I didn’t hold onto it for too long.